Using Smartphone Applications to Support Cognition in Individuals with Parkinson’s Disease: A Pilot Treatment Study
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Cognitive impairment from Parkinson’s disease can limit performance in daily activities, reduce participation in social/leisure activities, and increase caregiver burden. A 5-week treatment program was developed to train the use of smartphone applications to support cognitive functioning in personally-relevant activities. Voice commands were selected as an efficient access method to address progressive motor impairment in PD, and the principles of systematic instruction were incorporated throughout treatment. Two participants with cognitive impairment secondary to Parkinson’s disease completed training in reminder and calendar application skills using voice commands. Both participants demonstrated improvements across measures of skill acquisition (accuracy, success) and treatment impact (Goal Attainment Scaling, questionnaires) immediately following treatment and maintained most gains at two-month follow-up.
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